Chinese Funeral Palour
Growing up in a Funeral Palour is an absolutely a spooky and unforgettable experience.
Heng Siew Fook is a retired Publications Director and leaves in Taiping, Perak. When he was growing up in Malacca in the 1950s, he used to stay on the 1st floor of a shoplot. The ground floor was a Chinese Funeral Parlour and the owner rented the 1st floor to his parents at very cheap rates although Siew Fook’s mother was strongly against that as most Chinese considered those places as taboo (bad luck). As Siew Fook’s father is only a labourer at a Godown (warehouse) and the sole breadwinner, Siew Fook’s parents with 4 children of their own, eventually reluctantly agreed.
The old Chinese Funeral Palour (now abandoned) and the Tan’s rented house on the 1st floor
Although ultimately Siew Fook’s family have got to the constant chanting, prayers, candles, the smell of incense and the feeling of utter depression from the funeral parlour, they found it much harder to deal with visions of apparitions. Some religious belief that the people who have passed away, have only 8 days to remain in this realm.
On one occasion, Siew Fook woke up one night to get a glass of water as the night’s damp, warm air was really extremely hot and humid. Drinking his water, he casually looked to moonless night at the front window when he noticed a dark wavy figure at the corner of the living room. Creeping slowly forward he saw an apparition of an old man who seemed to be lost in thoughts. He was clothed in the old fashion attire but he had no legs…the ghostly apparition only show above the knees. Not making any noise, Siew Fook quietly crept to his bedroom.
On another occasion, Siew Fook’s mother was woken up by strange wailings coming from the front living room. She quickly got up and went down and was shocked to see an apparition of a young girl crying on the floor. Siew Fook’s mother hurriedly went to the girl on the floor to ask what is wrong. The little girl said she missed her parents and she just wanted to go home. Siew Fook’s mother was moved to tears and consoled the little girl until dawn, when the little girl disappeared.
Siew Fook was reminiscing about his childhood memories when he said, “It is a tough life for so many people and it is must be tougher for the ghosts”.